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VJP title
Utamaro print showing


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Paul Binnie — Printing Stages
16 steps for Keyblock and Color Separations


The illustrations below represent the sixteen stages of printing from a keyblock and color blocks to make a final print of Paul Binnie's portrait of the actor Ichikawa Ennosuke III in the role of the demon in the kabuki play Kurozuka. Except for the bero-ai (Berlin or Prussian blue) applied to the robe, the artist used various mixtures of colorants common to Nihonga ("Japanese-style painting") to make the final pigments. For example, the brown shown below in stage 4 was made from 6 different Nihonga pigments. Mixing by hand will produce slightly different hues among the impressions.

The colors on these illustrations appear slightly different from the colors indicated on the final print because the papers used for this demonstration were darker, altering the apparent hues of the pigments (see the impression on the right or at the Kurozuka link, which was made on whiter paper). The labels used for the illustrations below are based on descriptions provided by the artist, who refers to them as "color separations." © 2001-2019 by John Fiorillo

kurozuka ref image

kurozuka stage 1
1. Gray: Keyblock
kurozuka stage 2
2. Black: Keyblock
kurozuka_stage 3
3. Pink Bokashi: Mouth
kurozuka_stage 4
4. Brown: Hair
kurozuka stage 5
5. Gray: Shadow
kurozuka stage 6
6. Red: Flesh tint
kurozuka stage 7
7. Light Blue: Makeup
kurozuka stage 8
8. Middle-Blue: Makeup
kurozuka stage 9
9. Brown & Black: Eyes
kurozuka stage 10
10. Scarlet: Mouth & cartouche
kurozuka stage 11
11. Crimson: Robe, mouth, & cartouche
kurozuka stage 12
12. Crimson Intensifier: Robe
kurozuka stage 13
13. Indigo: Robe
kurozuka stage 14
14. Black Intensifier: Face
kurozuka stage 15
15. Silver Mica: Hair
kurozuka stage 16
16. Red: Artist's seals

Back to Binnie Profile Page or Binnie: Making a Print

© 2001-2019 by John Fiorillo

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